Assistant Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
Former Temple standout Christena Hamilton joined the Bradley Women's Basketball coaching staff in May 2016 and serves as the team's recruiting coordinator.
Hamilton came to The Hilltop after spending the previous five seasons as an assistant coach at Winthrop. During her time in Rock, Hill, S.C., the Eagles posted four winnings seasons and owned a 57-39 (.593) record in Big South Conference play.
In her first two seasons on The Hilltop, Hamilton has helped the Braves improve their overall win total in both campaigns. The 2016-17 saw Leti Lerma, who was the program’s first First-Team All-MVC selection since 2008-09, become Bradley’s all-time leading rebounder. In addition, her recruiting efforts have paid off with the Braves producing a pair of MVC All-Freshman Team selections in Chelsea Brackmann (2016-17) and Gabi Haack (2017-18).
Hamilton has stayed busy on the recruiting path as Bradley adds six newcomers in 2018-19. Five freshmen and junior college transfer Ellisha Davis join a returning cast which has posted an improved win total in three consecutive seasons (first time in program history) and features the top three scorers from 2017-18.
Prior to Bradley, Hamilton helped mentor a three-time Big South Conference Player of the Year during her tenure at Winthrop, a pair of conference Defensive Player of the Year winners and the 2012-13 Big South Freshman of the Year along with five first-team and four second-team all-conference performers over her five seasons. Winthrop finished in the top four of the Big South in four of her five seasons, including the 2013-14 season, which culminated with the team’s first NCAA Tournament appearance and 24-9 overall record.
Winthrop, which posted an 80-47 (.630) overall record in Hamilton’s first four seasons, also advanced to the WNIT in 2012-13 and finished second in the Big South.
A native of Coatesville, Penn., Hamilton ventured into college coaching as an assistant at Daytona State College in Daytona, Fla., and also has three years of prep experience; serving as head coach at her alma mater Coatesville High School. She led Coatesville to a 24-7 record in her first season as head coach.
The younger sister of former NBA star Richard “Rip” Hamilton, she graduated cum laude from Temple in 2004 with a degree in business administration and went on to earn a master’s in public administration from Villanova in 2011. Hamilton helped the Owls to two Atlantic-10 Conference regular-season titles and was an A-10 All-Tournament team selection as a senior in 2004, when she helped Temple to the tournament title and second NCAA Tournament appearance in three years.
Off the court, she serves as a board member for the Rip City Foundation which enhances lives through education and recreation with a special emphasis on healthy living.
Former Concordia-St. Paul head coach Paul Fessler joined the Bradley women’s basketball program as an assistant coach in May 2016 and is in his third season with the Braves.
Fessler brought 20 years of collegiate coaching experience to The Hilltop after spending the previous 16 years as head coach at Concordia-St. Paul in St. Paul, Minn. He led the Golden Bears to eleven 20-win seasons, 10 NCAA Division II Tournament appearances, five regular-season titles and was a three-time conference Coach of the Year selection.
In his first two seasons on The Hilltop, Fessler has helped the Braves improve their overall win total in both campaigns. The 2016-17 saw Leti Lerma, who was the program’s first First-Team All-MVC selection since 2008-09, become Bradley’s all-time leading rebounder. In addition, her recruiting efforts have paid off with the Braves producing a pair of MVC All-Freshman Team selections in Chelsea Brackmann (2016-17) and Gabi Haack (2017-18).
For the first time in program history, Bradley has improved its win total in three consecutive seasons with the 2017-18 squad’s 13-18 overall record marking the best overall record for the Braves since 2012-13. Bradley ranked third in the Missouri Valley Conference in both scoring offense and defense in 2017-18 in addition to posting the lowest turnovers-per-game average in school history.
During his tenure at Concordia-St. Paul, Fessler led his teams to a 326-148 (.688) overall record and Golden Bears were 199-90 (.689) in conference action. Overall, he owns a 427-166 (.720) career coaching mark in 20 years, which includes four seasons as head coach Anoka Ramsey Community College in Coon Rapids, Minn.
The 2013-14 season was one of four seasons in which Concordia-St. Paul notched more than 25 wins as the Golden Bears capped a 28-9 season with the program’s first NCAA Division II Elite Eight appearance. The Elite Eight was one of three NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 runs by his squads.
A 2012 inductee into the Minnesota Girl’s Basketball Hall of Fame, Fessler served on the NCAA Regional selection committee and was the NSIC representative to the WBCA.
Named interim head coach at Concordia-St. Paul in August 2000, Fessler followed up a 12-win first season with an impressive run of nine consecutive 20-win seasons and led the Golden Bears to the NCAA Tournament in 10 of the next 13 years.
Fessler was head coach at Anoka Ramsey Community College from 1996-97 through the 1999-2000 season and posted a 101-18 (.849) record during his tenure. The four-time Region 13 Coach of the Year, led his squads to three consecutive NJCAA Division III national championships and were the national runner-up in his final season in 1999-2000.
Originally from Sutherland, Iowa, Fessler graduated from Northern Iowa in 1988 with a degree in physical education.
Fessler and his wife Shelly have a daughter: Jade.
Kristi Zeller is in her third season as an assistant coach with the Bradley Women’s Basketball team after spending the previous five seasons as an assistant coach at Idaho.
In her first two seasons on The Hilltop, Zeller has helped the Braves improve their overall win total in both campaigns. The 2016-17 saw Leti Lerma, who was the program’s first First-Team All-MVC selection since 2008-09, become Bradley’s all-time leading rebounder. In addition, the Braves have produced a pair of MVC All-Freshman Team selections with Chelsea Brackmann garnering the honor in 2016-17 and Gabi Haack earning the distinction in 2017-18.
After a three-game improvement during Zeller’s first year with the Braves, Bradley went on to post a 13-18 overall record in 2017-18. Last season, BU posted the lowest turnovers-per-game average in program history coupled with ranking as one of the top defensive units in the Missouri Valley Conference.
Zeller was an assistant coach at Idaho for the previous five seasons, where she has helped guide the Vandals to three NCAA Tournament appearances, a regular-season championship and three conference tournament titles during her tenure.
In 2015-16 season, Zeller helped Idaho to a 13-5 Big Sky Conference record, 24-10 overall mark and third NCAA Tournament appearance in four seasons. Over the last four seasons, the Vandals were 80-50 (.615) overall which included a 47-23 (.671) record in conference play.
During the 2013-14 season Zeller was part of a team which captured a Big Sky regular-season title (15-1) and finished 25-9 overall en route to the second of back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances. That season, she helped mentor WBCA All-American and Big Sky Conference Player of the Year Stacey Barr.
A Stow, Ohio, native, Zeller was a four-year letterwinner at Toledo and graduated summa cum laude in 2009 with a degree in social work. She helped the Rockets to a pair of Mid-American Conference Tournament semifinal appearances during her collegiate career.
Zeller served as a graduate assistant coach at her alma mater after graduation and was part of former Evansville head coach Tricia Cullop’s coaching staff with the Rockets for three seasons.
A two-time Academic All-MAC selection, Zeller earned a master’s degree in liberal studies from Toledo in 2011.
Director of Women’s Basketball Operations
One of the top guards in Vanderbilt Women’s Basketball history and former WNBA player Dee Davis is the newest face on the Bradley Women’s Basketball staff, with third-year Braves’ head coach Andrea Gorski announcing her addition as Director of Operations in August 2018.
A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Davis has spent the last 10 years at University School of Nashville where she has served as a physical education teacher and admissions associate in addition to coaching both basketball and softball. Davis also served as Merit Pro Combine Director for Merit Management Group, Inc., since 2013, helping organize the annual event which provides a platform for draft prospects, free agents and graduating seniors a chance to be evaluated by scouts.
Following a standout collegiate career at Vanderbilt where she earned a bachelor of science degree in communication, Davis was a second round pick by the Houston Comets in the 2007 WNBA Draft. She played one season with both the Houston Comets (2007) and San Antonio Stars (2010), in addition to taking part in the Seattle Storm’s 2008 training camp. Davis also played two seasons professionally overseas in Bosnia (2007-08).
During her collegiate career, the point guard helped the Commodores to a 99-33 record and a pair of NCAA Sweet 16 appearances. Davis is the all-time assist leader in Vanderbilt history, dishing out 730 assists (5.8 per game) in addition to ranking sixth in school history in career free throw percentage (80.4 percent).
She was a two-time All-SEC performer, taking home first-team honors as a senior and was an honorable mention WBCA All-American as a senior. A High School All-American, Davis helped Vanderbilt to a pair of SEC Tournament titles and her squads reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament all four seasons. She still holds three of the top-10 season assist totals in school history.
Coordinator of Player Development
Erica Yost is the newest addition to the Bradley women’s basketball staff, coming to The Hilltop in July 2016 as the team’s Coordinator of Player Development and is in her third year with the Braves.
Yost oversees the team’s video elements in addition to supporting the staff’s administrative duties. During her first two seasons at Bradley, Yost has helped the Braves to improved overall records both seasons. In fact, for the first time in program history BU has had a better win total in three consecutive seasons with the 2017-18 season culminating in a 13-18 record for the squad’s best overall record since 2012-13. Bradley has finished seventh in the Valley standings in each of the last two seasons, marking the first back-to-back top-seven league finishes since 2008-09 (4th) and 2009-10 (T3rd).
A native of Detroit, Yost played for Bradley head coach Andrea Gorski at Ladywood High School, where she helped lead the Blazers to a 22-2 record and Catholic League Championship as a senior.
Yost spent the 2015-16 school year as an assistant coach at Christ Church Episcopal High School in Greenville, S.C., helping guide her squad to a 1A state championship. She also coached at several AAU programs during her time in Greenville, S.C., over the previous three years. In addition she interned with Athletes in Action, both in the Xenia, Ohio, home office and in Puebla, Mexico, where she assisted planning outreach events along with advising Latin American students.
A graduate of Goshen College in Indiana, Yost was a double major, earning degrees in youth ministry and physical education. She transferred to Goshen College for her final two years of eligibility after playing her freshman and sophomore seasons at Huntington University.
Director of Academic Services
Heather Moles is in her 11th year on The Hilltop and her second as the Director of Academic Services after serving the previous seven years as Academic Coordinator for Basketball.
Moles joined the Bradley Athletics staff in September 2008 as Learning Specialist, also serving as interim Academic Coordinator for Basketball in January and February of 2010. Moles took over the permanent role of Academic Coordinator for Basketball in July 2010.
A native of San Jose, Calif., Moles graduated from Duke in 1996 with a Bachelor of Science in psychology and a Bachelor of Arts in biological anthropology and anatomy. She also earned a minor in primatology.
A four-time letterwinner on the Blue Devils field hockey team, Moles was the ACC Rookie of the Year in 1992 and held the Duke record for career saves. She also owned three of the top five season save totals in program history.
Moles went on to earn a master's degree in applied anthropology in 2004 and later earned a second master's degree in physical anthropology in November 2005. After coaching stints at Stanford (1996-99), USA Field Hockey (1997-2002), Northwestern (1999-00) and Boston University (2000-02), Moles moved into the academic realm.
Moles was a teaching fellow at Boston from 2002-04, where she taught sections of Anthropology 102 while working toward her master's degree. She had a research fellowship at Boston University, where she co-authored a grant proposal focusing on the mutability of SIV to HIV. She also served as summer faculty at Boston, teaching Anthropology 210.